Holiday Chalkboards

Craftivity Designs | December 20, 2012 | Be the first to comment
I love chalkboards! Go into any craft store or home decorating store and you can find chalkboard items everywhere.  This post is going to show you how to make your own affordable chalkboard.  Here is a list of what you will need:

  • 1 Picture Frame (any size)
  • 1 Can of spray paint (any color)
  • Wooden decoration(s) or any other decoration of your choice
  • Hot glue gun and hot glue
  • 1 Roll of adhesive vinyl chalkboard paper, like the one here
  • Chalk, I used a chalk marker, like the one here

Step 1: Separate the glass and cardboard back from the picture frame.  
Step 2: Place the frame in an area where you can spray paint and then evenly coat the front, sides, and back of the frame with the paint.
Step 3: While the frame is drying, take the vinyl chalkboard roll and cut out a piece large enough to cover the glass for the picture frame.  Peel off the paper backing to reveal the adhesive side of the vinyl.  Slowly and evenly lay the vinyl on top of the glass.  Make sure to smooth it over the glass to prevent any bubbles from creating.
Step 4: Once the frame is dry, put the frame back together by securing on the glass and cardboard backing.
Step 5:  Add any decoration that you desire using the hot glue gun and glue.  I wanted holiday chalkboards so I added holiday wooden decorations from Michael's. 
Step 6: Write a message on your chalkboard using a piece of chalk or a chalk marker.

I actually made these chalkboards a few months ago for an event and unfortunately I did not take pictures during the process of creating them.  However, I do have pictures of the finished projects which you can see below!  Have fun creating your own chalkboard whether it be for a holiday, special occasion, or for everyday use.  

   

NOTE: Lora and I will be taking a short break from the blog to enjoy the holidays with our family and friends.  Blogging will resume in 2013! Happy Holidays from Craftivity Designs!



Blessings in Christmas Traditions

Craftivity Designs | December 18, 2012 | Be the first to comment
In the spirit of the season, today I'm going to share some of the Christmas traditions (both new and old) that I've been a part of this year - and the blessings in each.

#1. Our Advent Tree

A few weeks ago I shared a DIY Advent Calendar Tutorial. It has been such a blessing each day -- reading scripture as a family and sharing a new Christmas tradition.

It has been a little game of "seek and find" to look for the numbered bag that corresponds to the day. Our little boy is only a toddler, but even though he doesn't know numbers yet, he loves finding the bags on the tree.


#2.  Sharing with Friends

Some dear friends of mine from high school got together this past weekend for a "My Favorite Things" gift exchange (the Nester blogged about this type of party just a few days ago, here).

I love these girls and only get to see them several times a year. We ate dinner potluck-style and then exchanged gifts that represented some of our favorite things, stuff we can't live without. We set the limit at $5 and I thought it was such a fun, inexpensive way to be able to share our lives through gift-giving.

If you are looking for ideas for a similar gift, here are some of our Favorite Things:


#3. Being Crafty at Christmas

I work as an engineer, but I love to let out my craft-i-ness, and Christmas is the prefect time! My mom (who loves to quilt & sew) and I have been working on a special gift, that I can't wait to share, but I won't spoil the Christmas surprise.

My son has a chalkboard in his room, where he and I get to let out our artistic side. Right now, his is more "modern art" :) but I love to draw with him.



#4. Baking, Decorating (& Eating) Together

A friend of ours hosted a Cookie Decorating Party for several families and it was so. much. fun. Our toddler was a little generous with the sprinkles and we had flour everywhere, but it was a blast.

What a great way to spend time with friends and families at Christmas and both the little kids and the big kids enjoyed it. We got some special pictures with our kiddo and some sweet memories.

The formula is simple:
    plenty of dough + tons of flour + icing from across the rainbow + array of sprinkles



#5. Christmas by Candlelight

This may be my most favorite tradition. If we've gotten too busy with everything else, the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service centers us back on Jesus. Knowing Him is the blessing in Christmas.

One of my favorite bloggers, Britt from Gus and Lula, shared a free printable last week in this post. She has an Etsy Shop and I love her artwork. I own a few of her prints and am giving one as a gift this year, too. Go check her shop out!

She created this printable invitation as a way to invite her neighbors to the Christmas Eve Service at her church. If you have some friends to invite to your church on Christmas Eve, head over to her post and download the file.


What Christmas traditions have you been a part of this season?

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Places I Link Up:  It's Overflowing, That DIY Party,

Bows and Bells

Craftivity Designs | December 13, 2012 | 2 Comments so far

Recently my mom and I worked on decorating her rustic country style living room for Christmas. To fit with the style of the room we decided to create burlap ornaments and bells for the Christmas tree in the space. Check out the pictures below to see how we made these ornaments:


1. Gather materials: Ball ornaments, burlap (cut into pieces), ribbon, fake berries.   
2. Place ball in the middle of a piece of burlap fabric.  
3. Wrap burlap around the ball and gather at the top.
4. Secure extra fabric at the top with ribbon, tie in a bow. 
5. Add in fake berries around the ribbon.  
6. Place hook in ornament and hang on tree.

To create the bells, we took rustic bells purchased from Jo-Ann's and silver bells from the Dollar Tree and then added ribbon (also from Jo-Ann's).  On the rustic bells, they already had twine to use to keep the bell on the tree so the ribbon was added for decoration.  For the silver bells, we looped the ribbon through to create a hoop in order to hang the bell on the tree. 

Did you create any new ornaments for your Christmas tree this year?


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Last Minute Christmas Photo Session

Craftivity Designs | December 11, 2012 | 4 Comments so far
The holiday season is always a busy one and completing Christmas Cards is just one of the many tasks we try to fit into the short season. Surprisingly, we actually finished our Christmas Card photos in September. Yes, I know that seems super organized, but in fact the whole photo session was thrown together at the last minute. I had two $50 Groupons to Mixbook that were expiring and I needed to come up with something fast!



I pulled out some holiday themed scrapbook paper from my stash and cut 3 large pennants. You can also find templates online (like this one) to cut them from paper or fabric. I added the words "Ho, Ho, Ho" (like I'd seen here) and strung the pennants along some twine.


We took the photos outside, in our backyard, for several reasons:
  • The lighting is better, which makes it much easier to get a good photo.
  • We were going for a "U-Cut Tree Farm" setting.
  • Our toddler is much more natural playing outside, than trying to get him to sit still for a staged photo indoors.
To get the "U-Cut Tree Farm" look, we pulled out a small tree that sits on our porch for the holidays. It is actually pre-lit, but you don't even notice the lights in the photos.


After taking pictures of our kiddo, we set the timer on our camera and got a family photo, too.

And just is case you still think I'm on-the-ball for getting our cards done in September -- we've had the cards for months and they still aren't mailed... in fact they aren't even all addressed.  So I'm only going to share a glimpse of our finished card:



So, what about you? Have you taken your Christmas photos? Or will you be throwing a photo session together at the last minute, too?

Easy Anthropologie Holiday Knock-off

Craftivity Designs | December 6, 2012 | 3 Comments so far
While browsing through Anthropologie, I discovered some cute holiday decorations.  I really liked this one (shown below) but felt that $10 for a simple vase filled with glitter was more than I wanted to pay.  I then decided that this was a simple product that could easily be made into a cheap DIY project. Below are the steps for my Anthropologie Holiday Knock-Off that I made for a total of $3.80!


http://www.anthropologie.com/anthro/product/home-holdecorwrap/25739079.jsp

Here is how you can make your own version of this item:
Materials:

  • Small glass vase/bottle with a cork
  • Glitter (in any color)
  • Paper towel
  • Cardstock
  • Twine (in any color)
  • Pen or marker

Step 1:  Purchase a glass vase with a cork.

Step 2: Purchase a bottle of glitter in any color you choose. I choose an iridescent white glitter to make the glitter in the bottle have more of a winter/snowy feel to it.

Step 3: Take the cork off the vase and set the vase on a paper towel to catch excess glitter. Begin slowly pouring glitter into the vase (you could use a funnel if you wanted). Pour as much in as you desire.

Step 4: Place the cork securely onto the vase.

Step 5 (Optional):  To give the vase a little more of a holiday feel, I opted to add a tag on the vase.  I simply cut out a small strip of cardstock and then added a hole and cut the end of the strip into a "V" shape.  I then took a Sharpie pen and wrote "Let it Snow" on the tag and took a piece of red twine and tied the tag onto the vase.

Step 6: Place your new vase in with your other holiday decorations and enjoy!




Trending: Oh Faux Deer!

Craftivity Designs | December 4, 2012 | 3 Comments so far
Lately I’ve found myself being drawn to the Faux Deer Head trend. However, Mike thinks the idea of hanging any Deer Head, faux or not, on our walls is crazy.


So eager to try out the trend, but not jump in head first, I decided to whip up a little 2D Deer Head artwork for our kitchen. I figured it was safer than starting with the 3D version. Also, it’s just a Christmas decoration, so it’s not anything too permanent.
I added some whimsy too, by repeating the chevron design with the words “Oh Deer” on each side of the main print. And guess what? Not only do I like it, but Mike likes it too!

In case you are considering getting in on this trend, here is some more inspiration from around Etsy.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Or if you'd like our version of the Deer Head trend, you can purchase this print in our Etsy Shop, and we’ll customize it with the colors you choose!



And lastly, some more glimpses of holiday decor in my kitchen.



 

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